Saturday, July 28, 2012

Preparing for a long run.


I don't know of a better way to prepare for a long run than sushi.   The last time two times I did it, it helped create an amazing run and I am hoping for the same tomorrow when I do 12 miles.  

Can you believe it that Mike actually suggested sushi?  I think the grocery store sushi I got yesterday had an affect on him since I don't share.    Not only did we have amazing sushi, we had amazing weather to enjoy it in on the outdoor patio.   I haven't been able to say that much this summer. 

The saddest part is that I resisted the glass of wine I so badly wanted and opted for water.  

Thursday, July 26, 2012

There's no turning back now!


Ahhh!  After searching the web and realizing that the hotels are going fast up there, Lish and I are officially signed up!   Hotel is booked and now we just prepare.   Here goes nothing!

Following the trend

It seems to be an ongoing trend in the blogging world that many bloggers are sort of "away" right now. We're knee deep in summer and it's making it hard to either find time to post or find enough content to actually make an entire post. Well, here's my attempt at that.

 Running:

 I'm running! I'm doing a training schedule right now and feeling out the idea of an October full marathon. I haven't signed up for anything but Alicia and I both have our eyes on one in particular and have been doing long runs together for about a month or so now. If I can keep it up for a couple more weeks, I will take the plunge and do it. We've already discussed that we have no expectations for our first marathon and will just take it as it is. Neither of us are insanely fast to begin with but are happy with where we are at. The marathon we are looking at is in Ashland Wisconsin. It's on the northern peak of Wisconsin and is right on Lake Superior. With it being October, up north and on the lake, I don't think we will have to worry about these insane temperatures. Who knows though this year.

 One of my favorite things about this race is this:


That my friends is the elevation of this marathon.   Although it doesn't decline that much, I can't help but notice it's all a decline.   I'll take it!  

The race is also almost entirely on trails in the north woods when the peak fall colors are out.   Beautiful.    Hopefully I can keep it up on these long runs! 

Cooking:

My food has sort of been boring lately.   I haven't been making anything new because I am so busy all the time right now.   Both girls are in summer activities and I feel like I'm a taxi all day long.   I start training for my new job in a couple of weeks and I am enjoying shopping for new clothes to wear to work.   It's probably the best part! 

Oh and I am loving my new bike!   On Tuesday I took it out of the neighborhood for the first time and rode to my parents house via country roads.   It ended up being just a little over 13 miles round trip and I enjoyed it a lot!!  I can tell it's working a lot of muscles I don't normally use while running.  It was a little scary when cars drove by going over 45 mph but at the same time, I didn't feel overly unsafe.   I was able to maintain 15.3 mph  round trip.   Not bad for my first longer ride!    Now I just need to buy a cycling jersey so I can look the part and have a place to put my phone and stuff. 

Do you ride in a cycling jersey? 

What attracted you to your first marathon? 

Friday, July 20, 2012

INKnBURN Product Review

A while back Keira at INKnBURN sent me a couple of their products to test out and review.  I couldn't be more pleased.  Here is my Vlog review!  Don't mind my awkward "Thank you!" at the end.  #VlogFail




You can find all of INKnBURNs products here.   One of my favorites right now are these:


They look like denim shorts!!!  How cute!

The one and only thing that would keep me from having a closet full of INKnBURN is that the product is a bit on the pricey end.   I have noticed on Facebook that they do run specials once and a while so it would be a good idea to "like" them on Facebook here so you can find out when they are having a sale. 

When you look at the product you are getting, it's no wonder why they are on the higher end of cost when it comes to running/athletic clothes.   Their fabrics are phenomenal, the colors are insanely vibrant and they are full made in the USA.   They are made by runners also so they know what works and what doesn't.   I promise you will not be disappointed.


Monday, July 16, 2012

Vega Energizing Smoothie



If you read any healthy fitness blogs, you've heard of Vega.   They have many great products out there that people rave about and swear by.   I have always wanted to give Vega a try so when I was contacted by them to give the Vega Energizing Smoothies a try, I jumped at the chance. 

The whole idea behind these smoothies is that they are basically an on the go type of product.   You don't need to blend.   You don't need to have frozen fruit.   You just need a cup with a lid to shake.    You add the measured amount with 8 oz. of water and shake shake shake shake shake.  That's it! 

Here are some facts about the Vega Energizing Smoothie:

  • Two servings of veggies
  • 10 g of complete, plant-based protein
  • 5 g of fiber
  • 1 g of Omega-3
Want to know my favorite part about the above information?  I love that it has two servings of veggies.   I eat clean often but I still find it hard to get enough veggies in my diet and this definitely helps.   I also love the flavors.   They aren't over powering or fake tasting.  

The flavors offered:

  • Bodacious Berry
  • Choc-a-lot
  • Oh Natural
  • Tropical Tango 
  • Vanilla Almondilla flavors
My personal favorite was the Choc-a-lot.  Yum!



You can purchase  Vega Energizing Smoothies here.   Here in the U.S.A they retail for about $2.00 per serving.

Disclaimer:  I received a sample pack of Vega Energizing Smoothies in exchange for my honest review.   All opinions expressed are my own.  

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Random Sh!t

Is my title okay since I didn't really swear?  

Not too much to post about on the home front these days.    We are in the middle of summer which is filled with swimming lessons, parks, sweating constantly.  Seriously, I have leather seats in my car and they suck big time in the summer (and winter for that matter...brr).   It's like a slip and slide in there (that's what she said).

First thing first.   I got a bike!!!!   It was delivered yesterday but unfortunately I am no bike master so I had to bring it into the shop right away for them to put together and get it all nice and ready to ride.   The first words out of the shop owners mouth was "You got yourself a really nice bike!!  This is a great bike with great components!"  That made me feel so much better because I'm pretty ignorant when it comes to that stuff and I sort of just said screw it and pressed the "Buy" button on my computer.   I had instant buyers remorse and freaked out for a bit but eventually got over it and accepted my bike and now I'm happy with it.   Here it is!


I went with the Raleigh Supercourse full carbon bike.  Hopefully our relationship works out.  

Second thing on the home front is that I got another job.  I was lucky enough to be referred to this job, otherwise I never would have known about it.   I will be a personal banker and the hours are amazing.   I will be working with the internship students from the high school here so any day that they do not have school, or get out early, I do not work.   That means that all the days that my girls get out early or do not have school, I will be able to be home with them!    It honestly couldn't have worked out any better.   Training starts in August and I look forward to this next step in my life.   I also look forward to the clothes shopping I get to do now. 

My food has been so much better this week.   It feels great to be eating healthy again.   My water intake has sucked though because we actually have soda in the house from the 4th of July and if it's there, I tend to drink it.  

I signed up for The PaceSetters of the Fox Valley this weekend.   They were having a deal for their yearly membership for only $15.00 and then as a member there are tons of perks.   I already took advantage of one, $10.00 off the registration fee for the Fox Cities Half Marathon/Marathon.   They also have a VIP tent set up before the FCM with their own port-a-potties, water etc. and that is worth the $15.00 alone.   Lish and I also did one of their training runs on Saturday and I really liked it.   They had 3 water/Gatorade stations set up for the half marathon route and water, bagels, bananas after you are done.   If you're in the Fox Valley, it's worth checking out! 

All in all it's been a great week.   I just can't wait to get my bike back so I can take it out for a ride! 

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Recovering and Getting Back on Track

For the past week we have been in non-stop party mode.   We had party after party to either attend or throw and because of it, my food intake has been pathetic.    Smoked meat, pizza, subs, brats, burgers, hot dogs, pulled pork, chips, dip, sangria, beer just to name a few of the things I've had to eat this week.   Last night was the last party and finally today I am getting myself back on track.  

I started the morning with raiding my fridge for all the veggies I could find to put into my eggs.   Thankfully I had hit up the farmers market the day before so I had a good supply. 

Tomato, Zucchini, Onion, Spinach.  

Asparagus and Green Pepper

Eggs

Here is a fun fact:   Did you know that organic eggs actually have more nutritional value than non-organic eggs?   Mike always thought I was crazy to spend the extra money on organic eggs until we were watching "How it's Made" the other day and it was all about all the different kinds of eggs.   Cage-Free, Caged, Free Range, Organic, Large, Small, Etc.   In one sentence they said something along the lines that all eggs are pretty much created equally when it comes to nutritional value.   Mike was like "Ha!  I told you!"  and then the very next sentence was "The only egg that does contain more nutritional value are Organic Eggs." 

Boom.  



It may not be the prettiest thing but it is soooo delicious.   I used the whole egg this time because to be honest, I'm not scared of the yolk and the calories and fat involved with it.   Sometimes, if I have egg whites on hand I will just use that but I didn't have them this time. 

Here's to drinking a lot more water and eating tons of veggies and protein today. 


Tuesday, July 3, 2012

This is...

This is what 95 degrees looks like when you spend it inside all day.  This is the real deal here folks.  Candid camera got me at my finest! 


This is what 95 degrees looks like after a run.  This is also the real deal.   I'm all about making myself look good today...


PS.  Yes I may have eaten some of my own sweat on this run...and no I don't have any clue what I'm doing with my hand.  I pledge allegiance. 

June in Review and an update on my ITBS

It's been a hot summer here and nearly everywhere and that is made a slight impact on my June running.   I had many more crappy runs than I am used to and I have a feeling it is because of me not slowing down for heat.  I hate seeing slow miles and try to push it only to end up feeling light headed and pukey. 

The beginning of the month I was also suffering from IT band issues still.   I felt like they were never going to go away since I had been dealing with ITBS for over 2 months at that point.   Miraculously at some point my ITBS just stopped happening.  I noticed it first at the Bellin 10k.   I had no pain and normally it hits on or before 6 miles and I didn't feel it at all during that run.  This gave me the courage to be ballsy and take on some longer runs so I did an eight mile run without any pain and then a nine mile run and then all the way up to a ten miler last week.   During all of these I didn't even have the smallest amount of pain.  Anyone who has suffered from ITBS knows that this is simply glorious. 

For anyone that suffers from ITBS here is what I did.   You can take it or leave it but I was always looking for things to try to fix it so here we go:

I started with my chiropractor.   He assessed me and determined that it was ITBS.   He started me on Electra-Stimulation.  We did this for a few weeks.   During this time they were also using Kinesio Tape on my leg.   Neither seemed to do much. 

I saw a physical therapist at my Chiropractors office.  She assessed my muscle strengths and weaknesses and came up with some exercises that could help.  

My chiropractor moved on to doing ultrasound therapy on my leg.  At first it didn't seem to help.  He changed the settings and we continued with the ultrasound therapy.   After doing this for a few weeks, I asked about Graston Technique.   As luck would have it, he was being trained in Graston Technique that weekend so he had me come in early the next week to give it a try.   I didn't feel like it made a difference in my ITBS after so the next time I went in, I had him go back to the ultrasound therapy. 

During all of this I had also been foam rolling.   It hurt a lot to do and then I bought "The Stick" and I sort of fell in love with that.   So much easier and can put more pressure on one spot easier. 

My Chiropractor continued doing ultrasound therapy 1 to 2 times a week.   I started noticing that I was able to run longer before my ITBS would affect me and at this point it is now gone. 

Other tidbits:

I over pronate.   More so in my left leg than my right leg.   My left leg is the leg that is affected by the ITBS.  I have lazy gluts.  I have been working on strengthening them.  
I have weak hips.   I have been working on strengthening them as well. 
I have crazy strong hamstrings.   They have probably been compensating for my other weak muscles. 
The ITBS straps did nothing but irritate the heck out of me. 
I tried inserts but they seemed to give me too much support.  
I am much more conscious of my stride while running.   I try to keep it in check but with how much runs have been going lately, I'm more so working on one foot in front of the other  (aka don't stop running you lazy ass!)  

In the end, I'm not positive of what helped me out.  I do think the ultrasound therapy had something to do with it.  I also wonder if the hot weather helps.  I read something somewhere that said that the warmth could help. 

Here is my mileage for June 2012:

69.55 miles ran

That is my lowest mileage month since February (keep in mind only by a couple of miles).    I am in no way on track to get over 1000 miles this year.   One fun fact though is that I am officially past how many miles I ran last year!  

For those suffering from ITBS.   It's a pain in the ass (not literally).   I hate ITBS because there is no light at the end of the tunnel and not a lot anyone can do that will for sure help it out.  Keep your head up...and in my case, keep running.   I never stopped running and that was one of the reasons I love my chiropractor.   He never told me to stop running.   He in many ways encouraged it.  Of course I couldn't keep up the high mile runs like I would have loved, but I kept pushing it.   If I had a bad day with ITBS, I took it easy for a while.   I noted hilly routes and windy days made it much worse so I avoided those the best I could.   Will I get ITBS again?  There's a good chance.  At least when/if it happens again, I will know what seemed to work out for me and there wont be so much mystery behind it as before.